By Howard Rich
Last I year joined a pro-free market chorus in condemning Barack
Obama’s National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) — which filed suit against
aircraft manufacturer Boeing after the company dared to create new
jobs in a Right-to-Work state.
“The Obama administration’s war against Boeing is indeed a war against jobs,” l wrote.
Too bad the company failed to show the same fighting spirit that
thousands of limited government advocates demonstrated on its behalf.
Rather than standing up for its free market rights, Boeing instead
chose to cut a deal with Obama’s union goons. The company’s surrender
not only gave Big Labor the concessions it was seeking with regard to
the company’s expansion plans — more importantly it preserved the NLRB’s
ability to use such thuggish tactics in the future against other
companies (which Obama signaled he was more than happy to do via his
unconstitutional recess appointments to the NLRB).
Why did Boeing cave in the face of such a flagrant violation of its rights?
Perhaps that was the plan from the beginning. Remember Boeing is headquartered in Chicago and its executives gave Obama $197,000 in campaign contributions
during his 2008 presidential campaign — five times as much money as
the company gave the GOP nominee. Obama also named Boeing CEO Jim
McNerney as the head of his Export Council.
In 2010, Boeing received $19.4 billion in government contracts – and in early 2011 it was awarded a $35 billion contract
to design and build the Pentagon’s next generation air-refueling
tanker. The company has also been cashing in on billions of dollars in
subsidies doled out through the U.S. Export-Import Bank (a.k.a. the
“Ex-Im Bank”) — a crony capitalist entity that authorizes loans to
Boeing benefited from $8.4 billion in Ex-Im loans in 2009, $6.4
billion in 2010 and $11.4 billion in 2011 — gobbling up the overwhelming
majority of the bank’s lending capacity.
Obama and his allies are currently seeking a four-year
reauthorization of the Ex-Im Bank that would raise its lending capacity
from $100 billion to $140 billion.
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